Sometimes sprinkler heads can get buried under overgrown vegetation or dirt after landscaping renovations in the yard, long summer, or rain. When you have missing sprinkler heads, your plants won't get the water they need. It can also lead to uneven watering or flooding and ruin your yard. Therefore, it is imperative to locate sprinkler heads with overgrown vegetation and free them. And it is easier than you might think.
With a few steps and the right equipment, you will be on your way to finding missing sprinkler heads. In this blog, our experts have shared the best possible and proven methods to easily find your lost sprinkler heads.
How to Find the Sprinkler Heads
If your sprinkler heads have been covered with grass and buried under the ground, here are the tips for locating them in your garden, yard, or landscape.
Follow your Irrigation System Plan
The irrigation professionals who installed your sprinkler system had likely given you a system map or diagram showing the position of each sprinkler head and supply line. If you still have that map, follow the map from a visible sprinkler head and try to find the buried sprinkler heads.
However, if you're having trouble locating the heads, use small flags and pin them on visible sprinkler heads and then check the map to find the missing heads easily.
Measure the Distance Between Two Active Sprinkler Heads
If you don't have a system map or diagram, there is still a way you can locate sprinkler heads with overgrown vegetation. The method involves measuring the distance between active sprinklers and creating your own map. For this method, you'll need a measuring tape.
Most of the time, sprinkler heads are placed evenly in a pattern across your yard. Use the tape and measure the distance between functioning sprinkler heads. You can locate any buried or missing sprinkler heads by knowing the exact pattern between the two heads. If there is an unusual gap between visible heads, a missing sprinkler head may be between them.
However, this method can be challenging in a larger sprinkler system with complicated zoning. Large gaps between sprinklers cannot help identifying a missing sprinkler head. It will be easier to understand the patterns if you have an irrigation or sprinkler technician to help you.
Listen for the Water Sound and Look for Puddles
Another go-to method to locate sprinkler head is listening to the sound of water and looking for puddles. Sound can lead you to buried sprinkler heads. This is the quickest way, and you do not need any equipment. For it, turn on your sprinkler system and walk around your landscape.
Listen for the sound of rushing or trickling water underground. If you can't hear the water, wait for the puddles to start forming and find squishy areas. Once you locate them, mark them with a flag and turn the system off before raising the heads out of the ground.
If you have lost sprinkler heads for some time, they may have affected your landscape. The dry, brown, or wilted plants will help locate the missing sprinkler heads. The grass surrounding the sprinklers will be flat and healthy in green circles because the water runs at a low angle and is blocked by grass.
While the surrounding grass will be brown because it isn't receiving sufficient water. Walk in a circle around the green grass, and this is your search area to find the buried sprinkler heads.
Use a Garden Rake
Another cheap way to find a buried sprinkler head is to use a garden rake. If you have any idea of where the sprinkler head can be, either from a map, dead plants, or water sound, use a garden rake to find the exact spot of the missing sprinkler head.
Hold the rake and lightly drag it along the lawn. Don't hit too rigid or deep, as it can damage the grass. Make sure you have a close observation of the nearest location of a sprinkler head. When the rake hits the sprinkler head, you will hear or feel it. However, if you don't find anything, you must dig deeper, which can damage your grass.
Use Metal Detector
If you don't have a sprinkler system map. Then, you can try out this easy method. Many professionals use metal detectors to find their missing sprinkler heads. A metal detector is a great sprinkler head detector. Sprinkler heads usually have metal parts at the top of the head or inside gears.
Take your metal detector and scan it over a visible sprinkler head and set the sensitivity settings. Once your detector is able to locate the functioning sprinkler head, then you can start finding the buried sprinkler heads across your lawn. Whenever the metal detector locates something in the ground, pin the area with a landscape flag and check if you have found the buried head.
Seek Professional Help
Finally, if you can't locate the missing sprinkler head with any of the above methods or you don't have time, it is best to reach out to professionals.
Feel free to contact us and let us help you replace your lost sprinkler heads.
The Bottom Line
A sprinkler system with multiple head connections keeps your landscape green and healthy with time-to-time irrigation. However, sometimes you lose the sprinkler heads due to overgrown vegetation. But this guide and our experts' tips will benefit and help you to locate the missing sprinkler heads. So, try out any method and find the missing sprinkler head.